Thinking about LEAD?

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about who LEAD is and what LEAD does.

Who is LEAD and what do they do?

LEAD (Living Every day As Disciples) is a non-profit organization focused on growing Christian leaders with deep, bold, consequential faith.

LEAD works with both individuals and congregations to: Empower Christian Leaders — Transform Faith Communities — Influence the World

LEAD has proven that change is hard work and leaders need support to make changes in their communities. To this end, LEAD offers a three-year Christian leadership formation journey (LEAD Journey) designed to help teams of leaders transform their congregations in response to God’s mission in their context.

The landscape that we travel in today’s church is harder than ever. Synods and judicatories recognize this and are investing in growing Christian leadership for the sake of the future of God’s church.

As Christians, we know that God uses people to carry faith forward so, in order to be proactive, synods, judicatories, and individual congregations are partnering with LEAD to grow leadership capacity at all levels.

When leaders are committed to deepening their own spiritual lives, testing and expanding their thinking, learning from others, and boldly testing new ideas, those who follow will be invited to do the same

LEAD is curating best practices for Christian leadership rooted in a theology of loving God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and caring for our neighbors as modeled by Jesus himself.

“Living every day as disciples” invites every one of us to deepen our faith one day at a time, living a life of Christian pilgrimage.

Meet the LEAD team.

What makes LEAD different?

LEAD believes that every leader and every congregation can grow but not everyone will choose to grow. Growth is a choice to shift mindsets, learn new behaviors, and deepen faith.

LEAD has identified four vital behaviors that prepare individuals and faith communities to lead in a changing world. These four Growth Indicators are:

  • Listen – tuning in to God’s call, to God’s mission, doing justice in our own neighborhood and the world
  • Center – engaging in activities that awaken us to a deeper relationship with God, purposeful community, and our own identity
  • Explore – digging down beneath the surface to ask questions, opening our mindset to create systems that reflect God’s love
  • Connect – committing to work out of our comfort zones to expand relationships to reflect the diversity of God’s creation

By focusing on these four Growth Indicators, LEAD is able to help individuals and congregations move forward in response to God’s call.

Many of LEAD’s clients choose to be part of a LEAD Journey with a group of congregations from the same synod or judicatory. Each congregation works through a 10-step process specific to one of the four Growth Indicators, attends semi-annual learning seminars with their cohort, and meets monthly with a coach who provides accountability and support through the change process, 

LEAD also offers coaching, consulting, webinars, and resources to individuals and congregations outside of the LEAD Journey.

By the power of the Holy Spirit, with real commitment and openness, growth is possible for all of us.

What are the four Growth Indicators (areas where behavior change happens)?

The four Growth Indicators describe behaviors that are vital to making change happen: Listen, Center, Explore, Connect. 

These Growth Indicators are grounded in Jesus’ own words found in Mark 12:29-31, Matthew 22:36-38, and Luke 10:27-29:

“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart [Listen] and with all your soul [Center] and with all your mind [Explore] and with all your strength [Connect].’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
– Mark 12: 29-31 NIV

This chart shows how the four Growth Indicators, the Great Commandment, and LEAD’s processes fit together.

LEAD’S Four Growth Indicators for Vital Behaviors

Loving God with all of our heart calls us to listen—The Tune In Process

  • The Growth Indicator? LISTEN
  • The point? To get a larger view of God and our world as we listen to God in Scripture, prayer, in each other, and in our neighborhood
  • How? Participating in LEAD’s 10-step Tune-In Process
    • Listen to God in scripture, in prayer, in the congregation, and in the neighborhood
    • Shift from an inward to an outward focus
    • Launch experiments with new learnings and partners

Loving God with all of our soul calls us to centerThe Wake Up Process

  • The Growth Indicator: CENTER
  • The point: To deepen our relationship with God and each other, focusing on our spiritual life through prayer and quiet time, inspiring us to see everything as sacred. We find our clear purpose and values and congregational identity
  • How? Participating in LEAD’s 10-step Wake-Up Process
    • Clarify congregational purpose and values
    • Align congregation for mission
    • Articulate congregational identity

Loving God with all our mind calls us to exploreThe Dig Down Process

  • The Growth Indicator: EXPLORE
  • The point: To discover new ways of thinking so that we expand our understanding of God and the world. We explore faith questions including: theology, governance, staffing, generosity, stewardship, etc.
  • How? Participating in LEAD’s 10-step Dig-Down Process
    • Deepen Christian frame and theology through Bible Study
    • Streamline systems for strategic ministry, includes staffing and governance
    • Increase commitment and generosity

Loving God with all of our strength calls us to connectThe Work Out Process

  • The Growth Indicator: CONNECT
  • The point: To deepen and expand networks that support a growing  faith and healthy life. Be encouraged to care for our bodies and share resources, wisdom, tools, and knowledge with each other. We create a trusted, welcoming place to grow strong relationships and telling our story through our inward and outward communication
  • How? Participating in LEAD’s Work Out Process
    • Create trust to extend hospitality with openness for diversity
    • Expand comfort zone through strong relational connections
    • Tell the congregation’s story through effective communication

What is the LEAD Journey?

The LEAD Journey is a 3-year experience of transformation. It involves a group of congregations (oftentimes from the same synod or judicatory) who walk together through the process. Leaders in each congregation take on new behaviors, deepen their faith, and engage in deep listening as they work to move their congregations forward in mission.

The LEAD Journey includes a commitment to participate in learning seminars every six months (held in the local area) with other congregational leaders on the journey and to meet monthly (online) with a LEAD Coach, as the congregation works through the Tune In Process and the Wake Up Process. Some congregations may also engage in the Work Out Process or Dig Down Process. These processes are guided transformational experiences, much like an intentional exercise program, to deepen a congregation’s capacity to lead adaptive change.

To learn more, contact LEAD.

Are we ready? A brief quiz about leading change

There are seasons in a congregation’s life that are right for leading transformation. There are also seasons where making changes in the system may be unhelpful, or worse, cause extreme conflict and crisis. Where is your congregation right now? Take this simple quiz.